Living Books for Counting: Math Literature for Kids

Living books for counting are so helpful for teaching early number concepts to young children and to help older children conceptualize really big numbers. This post includes some of my favorites to help you do both of those things.

Why add counting books to your plan for homeschool math? They help familiarize children with the meaning of numbers. It’s a very abstract thing to understand what numbers mean and what counting represents. Books and other things like manipulatives really help build pictures in a child’s mind so that numbers and counting make sense.

Counting Picture Books

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Living Books for Counting

I just love these living books for counting. They gently teach the idea of one-to-one correspondence (which is number sense) and growing numbers. A few of them also touch on mathematical concepts like sorting, too.

Most of the books on this list deal with the numbers 1-20, which is foundational for moving into addition and subtraction.

1, 2, 3 to the Zoo: A Counting Book12 Ways to Get to 11 (Aladdin Picture Books)Anno's Counting BookCaps for Sale: A Tale of a Peddler Some Monkeys and Their Monkey BusinessCounting CrocodilesFive Silly Fishermen (Step-Into-Reading, Step 2)How Many Bugs in a Box?: A Pop Up Counting Book (Bugs in a Box Books)How Many Snails?: A Counting Book (Counting Books (Greenwillow Books))Just Enough Carrots (MathStart 1)The M&M's Brand Counting BookMouse CountOne Dragon's DreamOne Red Sun: A Counting Book (Classic Board Books)


Over in the MeadowSix-Dinner SidSo Many Cats!Spaghetti and Meatballs For All! (Scholastic Bookshelf)Ten Apples Up On Top!Ten Black DotsTEN IN THE BEDTen, Nine, Eight Board Book (Caldecott Collection)The Button BoxThe Very Hungry CaterpillarThe Water HoleTurtle Splash!: Countdown at the PondBarefoot Books We All Went on Safari: A Counting Journey through Tanzania (English and Swahili Edition)


Living Books About One Hundred

Once basic counting is well underway, it’s just a hop, skip, and jump for children to learn to count to 100. Use these books to make 100 come to life. They are especially fun to read each year when the 100th day of school rolls around!

100 Bugs!: A Counting Book100 SnowmenI'll Teach My Dog 100 WordsOne Hundred Hungry AntsOne Hundred Shoes: A Math Reader (Step-Into-Reading, Step 2)One Watermelon SeedThe Chicken ProblemThe Wolf's Chicken Stew


Living Books About Big Numbers

Big numbers are especially abstract. It’s hard for children to wrap their minds around numbers like 1,000, 100,000, 1,000,000, and bigger. These books present those giant numbers in ways that help children to understand the size significance of how big they really are.

How Big Is A Million? (Picture Books)How Many Jelly Beans?How Much Is a Million? (Reading Rainbow Books)If You Made a MillionMillions of Cats (Gift Edition) (Picture Puffin Books)Millions, Billions, & Trillions: Understanding Big NumbersSir Cumference and All the King's Tens: A Math Adventure


We use living books in every single subject in our homeschool because they add understanding, richness, and interest for all ages. Math is no exception! Living math books have been key in familiarizing my children with math concepts from preschool through middle school.

Living Math Booklists

I have written other posts about living math books that you might like to see, too!



How to Add More Living Math

Books are just one fun addition that can bring amazing results to math understanding outside of the textbook. If you’re interested in other ideas, check out either the Loving Living Math Masterclass (video training) or Loving Living Math book!

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